Friday, May 28, 2010

Plans Are Nothing

At the beginning of the 2010, we sat down and thought of all the things we wanted to do this year. We broke that down into projects, and then I spent some time figuring out all the tasks that went into those projects.

Two weeks later, that plan was out the door. I don't think we've looked at it since.

That doesn't mean it hasn't significantly informed our thinking. We know that growth is our big goal this year. A lot of our plans have been incorporated into what we've been doing as we've gone along, and as things we never anticipated -- like being included in Real Simple's Summer Gift Guide -- have come along, we've been able to take advantage of things that have helped us achieve our goals, just not in the way that we thought.

In grad school, we had a professor who was fond of saying: Plans are nothing, planning is everything. Thinking through the issues is important. Knowing what can fall by the wayside is important. Being clear on your goals is INCREDIBLY important. Knowing the exact steps you're going to take to get there? Eh, not so much.

We're on the way to reaching our goals, but not quite how we thought we would.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

End-of-Year Presents

We got an Etsy convo last week from a mom who had tried our lollipops and loved them so much she decided that she wanted to give one Spice Rack to each of her children's teachers as an end of the year present.

Additionally, she decided that her kids should give out one lollipop to each student in their classes. One flavor per class, though, to minimize arguing over who should get which flavor.

We love the idea of giving lollipops as end-of-the-year teacher and student gifts.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Kate & Susan To Reunite: Sell Candy, Watch Movies

Yes it’s true. This Charming Candy will be a vendor at this July’s huge 2-day Urban Craft Uprising show in Seattle. Kate’s making the trip up from Sunnyvale so that we can handle what we hope will be massive throngs of candy-crazed customers!

Our agenda is not an all-work-and-no-play deal, however. I would not be surprised if we watched a mutual favorite movie – Drew Barrymore’s Never Been Kissed. We quote that to each other ALL THE TIME.

Also of top importance: we’re going to eat some of our Twilight-inspired Love Triangle lollipops and see the movie Eclipse. I think we probably need to get organized and get our IMAX tickets from Pacific Science Center soon, because she won’t be in town for very long. The other gripping question is whether either of us will break down and see it when it opens.


Are you doing anything for Eclipse? We’d be delighted to hook you up with mass quantities of Blood Suckers… 

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Lolli ‘Toons

One of the perks of being a lollipop business is all the “sucker” puns that are possible. Check out these adorable cartoons that our friends Justine and Amy have recently passed along:

Monday, May 24, 2010

Lolli Tunes

There are some albums that I often turn to when I’m wrapping the silver ties around the lollipops to close their bags. One of them is LOVEWORLD by Seattle band U.S.E.

What I do in the kitchen can’t really be considered ‘dancing’ per se, but you can definitely find me bobbing my head and jamming as much as I can while standing fairly still and staying focused on the task at hand.

K.I.S.S.I.N.G. is one of my favorite tracks. I'm trying to embed the video from their site:

> > > > > >

Amazingly, the band has a “pay-what-you-wish” policy for their downloadable tracks at – do yourself a huge favor and buy everything they have :-)

Friday, May 21, 2010

The Name We Didn't Take

It actually took us a fair bit of time to come up with a name for This Charming Candy. One of the other really strong contenders was Trefoil Confections. There were a host of reasons we decided against it, but I still really love that name.

A trefoil knot, for all of you who aren't math geeks, is a three looped knot that is the basis for a lot of topology and knot theory. It's pretty and it definitely speaks to Susan's and my history as math majors.

Alas, Trefoil Confections was too hard to pronounce and (more importantly) the Girl Scouts already had cookies named Trefoils, so we decided against it and moved to a name that honored our love of music instead.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

There's A Date...

On a corner of our Etsy shop, there's a date that says when we joined:

You might think to yourself "Hey, they've been selling lollipops for a year now!" That's actually not quite true. We started selling lollipops on October 8, 2009.

However, it does mean that by this time last year, Susan and I had made the decision to take the plunge and start our own business. We'd decided on a name - it was one of the first things we did. We brainstormed a whole bunch of qualities we wanted our business to have: fun, friendly, personable, experimental, and enthusiastic, among others. Charming seemed like a great word to sum that all up.

One of the first things we did after deciding on a name was to make sure we had that name on Etsy.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Less than 2 months…

Wow, I just realized that our next big craft show, Urban Craft Uprising, is less than two months away.

UCU is a 2-day show in Seattle Center’s Exhibition Hall that takes place July 10-11 this year. It features over 120 vendors of high-quality, amazing handmade goods. I picked up several wonderful and totally original gifts for friends and family at last year’s summer and winter shows, and I’m excited and honored to be on the other side of the transactions this time :-)

And I need to point out that the insanely adorable graphic on the UCU homepage was designed by Jessie, the cakespy! She’ll be selling her artwork at UCU, so definitely mark your calendar.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Squee for Glee…

Kate & I are huge fans of the TV show Glee, and are huge fans of Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog and pretty much all things Joss Whedon… so yeah. To say we will squee for this week’s episode of Glee is an understatement.

You too? What else makes you squee?

Monday, May 17, 2010

To Surprise and To Delight

One of the best parts of my job is being present when someone tries our lollipops for the first time, or tries a new flavor for the first time. It’s one of the reasons that I love selling our candy in-person at local craft shows.

Just this month, I was fortunate enough to watch people try several flavors:

“This is my new favorite flavor!” (Pistachio-Marshmallow)

“At first I was thinking, well how good could a sucker really be, honestly. WHAT DID YOU PUT IN THIS TO MAKE IT SO ADDICTING!?” (Salted Caramel)

“Wow, the more I eat this the more I like it” (Nutmeg Creme)

“This is incredible.” (Blood Sucker)

At the end of nearly every Hold Steady concert I’ve been to, and I’ve been to at least 7 or 8, Craig Finn says something to the effect of: “There is so much joy in what we do” and he offers heartfelt thanks to the audience for letting the band do what they love to do.

Kate and I want to offer our thanks to you, our amazing customers: for your support, for your encouragement, and for your appreciation. It means more to us than we can ever express. Thank you!

Friday, May 14, 2010

We Need to Talk About Teaberry

Every time I make a batch of lollipops, I think the moments I most look forward are those when the drops of color hit the boiling syrup. I just love watching the surging bubbles carry the beautiful hues across the mixture, distributing it everywhere.

I work hard to perfect the color for each flavor because we here at This Charming Candy aren’t content merely to offer candy that’s uniquely delicious – we’re suckers for gorgeousness (pun intended).


Teaberry is one of my absolute favorites in the beauty department. It has a marvelously refreshing wintergreen flavor that just screams out for sparkle. I use a couple of different colors to create the effect that I hope you can see in the photo above, including shimmery sheen that adds depth and a subtle internal sparkle to the candy.

Teaberry lollipops are available in a single-flavor twelve pack or as part of the Adventurer’s Pack collection.

photo by Kevin Keeker

Thursday, May 13, 2010

A Common Misconception

More than once, we’ve heard someone remark that our lollipops are “too beautiful to eat.”

We beg to differ! They are exactly beautiful enough to eat.

Pistachio-marshmallow lollipop

Root Beer Float, Birthday Cake, and Bubble Gum lollipops

purple Honey-Jasmine lollipopSalted Caramel lollipop

Beautiful, handmade artisan lollipops from This Charming Candy. Oh yeah!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

One More Photo

We tucked a couple of lollipops in the ribbon on the present too. It's a riot of color in there, but I particularly like the way the strong Bubble Gum pink works with it and makes it even more festive.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

New Spice Rack Pictures

While we were photographing all the packs in yesterday's pictures, we noticed that the oranges and the Spice Rack lollipops looked nice together. So we started playing with those too. We really liked the way the green leaf on the orange picked up the Vanilla-Cardamom color too in the above photo.

The below one is a bit further away, but it shows the whole package. They're both lovely.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Real Simple's Summer Gift Guide

If you follow us on twitter or like us on Facebook, you may have seen a post from us last night:

It's true: our Adventure Pack lollipops are in Real Simple's 2010 Summer Gift Guide! Some subscribers are already getting it in their mailboxes, and we've been assured that it will be on newsstands on Friday May 14th. We'll certainly be running out and buying a couple of copies as soon as we can!


We were also looking for some pictures of all our lollipops for our Collection of the Month and Family Collection of the Month subscriptions. The top one is a little dark, but shows all the lollies and their packaging off well.

I love the angle on the one below, but I'm sad that you can see the play-dough container that we used to prop up the Celebration Time package.

photos by Kevin Keeker

Friday, May 7, 2010

Bubble Gum Closeup

This is a close-up of the Celebration Time lollipops, focusing on Bubble Gum, in the bud vases. I just love this picture to death.

Photo by Kevin Keeker

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Issaquah Art Walk

Susan will be selling candy at the Issaquah Art Walk on Friday May 7th! This is our first time at an art walk, so we're looking forward to meeting people and interested to see what the turnout will be like. We'll have our yummy Spice Rack, traditional Celebration Time, unexpected Adventure Pack, and Twilight-inspired Love Triangle lollipop collections, as well as plenty of singletons.

Stop by and say hi!

What: Issaquah Art Walk
Where: X Marks The Tot children's clothing store, Gilman Village Shopping Center in Issaquah, WA
When: Friday May 7th, 5pm - 9pm

New Packaging for 12-Packs

We've slowly been updating the labels on our 12-pack bags. Justine Kamionsky has done a wonderful job making all of our packaging and labels look incredible, including this Birthday Cake dozen. Let's take a closer look, shall we?

Photos by Kevin Keeker

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

EtsyRAIN Spring Craft Show

Susan will be selling our yummy lollipops at the EtsyRAIN Spring Craft Show this weekend! You can get our popular Spice Rack, traditional Celebration Time, out-there Adventure Pack, and Twilight-themed Love Triangle lollipops. We'll have single lollipops and single-flavor twelve packs as well.

Admission is a $1 suggested donation to the Lifelong AIDS Alliance or a canned food donation for their meal delivery program, and, not that you need the incentive, but the first 50 customers through the door will get free swag bags made by Seattle-area artists.

We'd love to see you there!

What: EtsyRAIN Spring Craft Show
When: Saturday May 8th, 11am - 5pm
Where: The lobby and fountain courtyard of the Intiman Theatre at 201 Mercer St in Seattle.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010


We know that our lollipops are often given as presents, so it seemed only natural to photograph some Celebration Time lollipops with some presents. I also love how this picture shows off our beautiful packaging.

Photo by Kevin Keeker

Monday, May 3, 2010

Lollipops in a Vase

We had a blast doing a photo shoot this weekend - Kevin and I were in California and we had Sudz in via video chat and desktop sharing. I love technology. We got a ton of great photos too - like this one of our Celebration Time lollipops in bud vases.

Or perhaps I could interest you in a different angle?

Look for lots of eye candy on the blog this week!

Photo by Kevin Keeker